Innovative Methods to Reduce Aircraft Outer Mold Line (OML) Repair Cycle Time
Agency / Branch:
DOD / USAF
Repair cycle time reduction is the most significant factor in this effort. Material development and all material candidates will be evaluated for cure and set times, post cure time conditions, material prep and handling time. The technical objectives are to develop concepts and provide polymeric material alternatives that will meet the desired electrical, mechanical and thermal performance of the aircraft to be repaired while significantly reducing overall down time for the aircraft. This new material(s) would not lose electrical performance during service life and would last a predictable amount of time. A key factor in material design is the benefit of being able to use the current application and cure tools available for the current methods. The current removal and application methods are restricted to plastic tooling, where no metal or sparking tools are allowed, and a combination of heat lamps, heat guns and heat blankets for any cures that need thermal energy to complete the repair are manual intensive with excessive cycle times. A combination of new materials, removal and prep techniques as well as application means will be reviewed to reduce overall repair cycle time and with the addition of new materials extend the current life expectancy. BENEFIT: Upon successful development of the fast cure repair materials, ARC could offer this same material to other branches of the Military as an alternative to current repair materials and methods. RAM repair is also useful on other Military vehicles such as Naval ships and periscope assemblies, other types of fixed wing and rotor aircraft and unmanned air vehicles. ARC could also offer these same materials as new products so that they would be used as the original installation on vehicles, extending service life from the start.
Small Business Information at Submission:
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